The Conservative Party of Canada (CPC) candidate for the next federal election, Michel Gauthier, spoke on the issue of the Chalk River nuclear waste management facility project. According to Michel Gauthier, the social acceptability is not there and the support is not sufficient to move forward with this project.
“The Chalk River nuclear waste disposal project must first pass the stage of social acceptability before it is approved and moved forward, which is not yet the case” said Michel Gauthier, who is also spokesperson for the Conservative Party in the Outaouais.
Still according to Michel Gauthier, the problem, initially, is the location of the proposed site, an area of 16 hectares on a hill located less than a kilometer from the Ottawa River, the main source of drinking water in the region. In addition to being close to the river, the site is surrounded by streams, marshes and swamps.
“Water is the number 1 enemy of radioactive waste, according to David Boilley, a French nuclear physicist. The Canadian Nuclear Laboratories (CNL), the company responsible for the project, plans to bury one million cubic meters of low and intermediate level radioactive waste here. One would normally expect a site in a remote area, far from any built-up area, for this kind of landfill. Under the circumstances, the federal government, which still owns the Chalk River facilities, has a duty to assess other potential sites and then explain why it would still want to retain the Chalk River site for landfill, ” asserted Michel Gauthier.
Still too many questions according to Michel Gauthier
“The government has also started the process of updating its radioactive waste disposal policy, it would also be appropriate to await the conclusions of this exercise,” he added.
According to the Conservative spokesperson, there is no question in this file of being for or against the landfill project. “The issue here is that there are still too many unanswered questions about the questionable choice of location,” concluded Conservative Pontiac candidate Michel Gauthier.
Note that for years, many people have opposed this project, since the site is located too close to the Ottawa River.